Waltham man pleads innocent to domestic assault

MIDDLEBURY — A Waltham man on Monday pleaded innocent in Addison County Superior Court, Criminal Division, to a charge of aggravated domestic assault after being cited into court on Sunday for allegedly holding a knife against the throat a woman police identified as his girlfriend and then pushing her down a flight of basement stairs.
After entering his plea, Judge Helen Toor released Stephen H. Walter, 34, with conditions that include Walter not make contact with or harass the victim, buy or use firearms or other deadly weapons, or enter 150 Crosby Heights Road.
According to the affidavit filed by Vermont State Police Trooper Robert Helm, he and Vergennes Police Officer Adam O’Neill arrived at that address at 10:38 p.m. on Sunday, four minutes after the victim called 911.
According to the victim’s written statement that she gave Helm, she and Walter argued about their relationship and “A fight escalated, he threatened me and pulled a knife on me, while holding my throat with the other hand and pushing me backwards to the stairs. He pushed me down the stairs, I fell to the bottom, got up, returned to the top where he was still standing.”
There, the victim wrote, the fight continued: “We argued some more, he hit me, pushed me to the ground. I bit him, his thumb, which was over my mouth and we fought on the floor, he choked me while threatening me.”
Soon afterward the victim called 911. She described the weapon as a folding knife that Walter allegedly regularly carried, and said it was about eight inches long when unfolded.
Helm wrote he saw “red blotchy marks” around the victim’s neck, and later that she told her ex-husband that she “started to feel pain in her left shoulder, and tailbone.” Photographs of her injuries were taken at the state police barracks in New Haven, according to Helm’s affidavit.
According to the affidavit, Helm called Judge Toor that evening, and she set conditions early Monday morning that Walter be held “until his BAC (blood-alcohol content) was below a 0.08 percent;” that is the legal limit for driving in Vermont. According to Helm, Walter’s BAC just after midnight was 0.166 percent, and he was lodged at the Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility and ordered to appear in court in Middlebury the next afternoon.
Walter’s next court appearance is scheduled for June 25.

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